We remember: All-Star Race runners-up
By Steve Luvender | Monday, June 14, 2021
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They say nobody remembers the second-place finisher in the NASCAR Cup Series All-Star Race. After all, there are no points on the line -- just a $1 million prize and bragging rights -- but what fun is that for the forgotten runner-up? Let's give the forgotten second-place finishers their moment.
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2021: Brad Keselowski
Brad Keselowski was able to get to leader Kyle Larson's bumper multiple times in the closing laps but unable to make a pass before the checkered flag waved. Keselowski was short by .206 seconds. It was the first time Texas Motor Speedway hosted the All-Star Race.
Jared C. Tilton | Getty Images
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2020: Kyle Busch
Seventeen races into the regular season, reigning NASCAR Cup Series champion Kyle Busch had yet to capture a checkered flag. He was .418 seconds short of first-time All-Star Race winner Chase Elliott at Bristol Motor Speedway.
Streeter Lecka | Getty Images
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2019: Kevin Harvick
Kevin Harvick won Stage 2 and overcame a loose wheel in Stage 3 to try and run down race winner Kyle Larson -- but ultimately the 2018 All-Star Race winner came up a spot short.
Sarah Crabill | Getty Images
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2018: Daniel SuarezDaniel Suarez raced his way into the main event by capturing Stage 2 of the Open. He kept the speed in the All-Star Race, running among the contenders for the bulk of the race before finishing second to a dominant Kevin Harvick.
Sarah Crabill | Getty Images
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2017: Kyle LarsonPolesitter Kyle Larson led a race-high 40 of 70 laps but ended up finishing second to Kyle Busch.
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2016: Brad KeselowskiBrad Keselowski dominated a portion of the All-Star Race, eventually succumbing to an even faster Team Penske teammate, Joey Logano.
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2015: Kevin HarvickIn 2015, Kevin Harvick mounted a charge at the end of the race past teammate Kurt Busch, but ran out of time to track down winner Denny Hamlin.
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2014: Kevin HarvickJamie McMurray shocked the NASCAR garage area in 2014, leading the final 10 laps of the All-Star Race after an otherwise quiet season. Kevin Harvick came home second.
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2013: Joey LoganoIn his first outing with Team Penske in the All-Star Race, Joey Logano finished second behind Jimmie Johnson, who showed surprising speed at the end of the race.
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2012: Brad KeselowskiDespite leading the most laps, Brad Keselowski couldn't overcome Jimmie Johnson at the end of the All-Star Race, finishing P2 in Keselowski’s second All-Star Race in the No. 2.
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2011: Kyle BuschIn 2011, Kyle Busch made his strongest run to date in the All-Star Race, finishing second, but the trophy and sweet million went to Carl Edwards.
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2010: Martin Truex Jr.After transferring into the All-Star Race, Martin Truex Jr. turned a lot of heads driving Michael Waltrip Racing's No. 56 Toyota. In the end, he couldn't quite track down race winner Kurt Busch. 2010 was Truex's best performance in the All-Star Race to date.
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2009: Matt KensethIt looked like the 2009 All-Star Race trophy and million dollars belonged to Matt Kenseth until Tony Stewart slipped by for the victory with two laps remaining.
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2008: Greg BiffleGreg Biffle tried his best to mount a charge at leader Kasey Kahne in the closing laps in the 2008 All-Star Race, but Kahne held on and pocketed $1 million.
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2007: Jimmie JohnsonIn the mid 2000s, Jimmie Johnson was the master of Charlotte Motor Speedway. In the 2007 All-Star Race, however, he was bested by Kevin Harvick, who led 20 laps en route to victory after finishing second the year before.
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2006: Kevin HarvickJust 10 cars finished the crash-riddled 2006 All-Star Race. Kevin Harvick commanded a late portion of the race, but a dominant Jimmie Johnson overcame the carnage to score the million dollar bonus.
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2005: Elliott SadlerThe 2005 All-Star Race looked like it could have been the biggest career triumph for Elliott Sadler—driving a fast Robert Yates Racing Ford and leading several laps—but it was Mark Martin who took the checkered flag first. To add to the defeat, this race was Sadler’s last appearance in the All-Star Race.
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2004: Ryan NewmanIt looked as though Ryan Newman was going to cruise to a dominant victory in the 2004 All-Star Race, but Matt Kenseth had other plans, passing Newman’s loose car in the closing laps.
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2003: Kurt BuschIn 2003, Kurt Busch had a fast Ford—and it looked like he was going to win his first All-Star race—but after a field inversion, Jimmie Johnson came out on top.
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2002: Dale Earnhardt Jr.If the 2002 All-Star Race were just a bit longer, Dale Earnhardt Jr. might just have celebrated his second All-Star victory. Ryan Newman, however, held off Earnhardt's charge in the closing laps to claim the win.
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2001: Dale JarrettIn 2001, Jeff Gordon was the driver to beat all season long. The All-Star Race was no exception, where he beat Dale Jarrett by 0.7 seconds. Gordon celebrated in Victory lane, while Jarrett went home the 'first loser' for the second consecutive season.
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2000: Dale JarrettIt was the Dale-and-Dale-and-Dale show in the 2000 All-Star Race. Dale Earnhardt Jr. charged past Dale Jarrett in the closing laps of the race, earning a popular victory. Dale Jarrett finished second, and Dale Earnhardt third.
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1999: Tony StewartTerry Labonte prevailed after a multi-car crash took out many competitors in the 1999 running of the All-Star Race. It was a battle of rookies and veterans, as Labonte held off Tony Stewart in his first All-Star Race appearance.
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1998: Bobby LabonteThe landscape of the 1998 All-Star Race changed greatly in the closing laps of the event as a dominant Jeff Gordon ran out of fuel on the last lap of the race. Mark Martin and Bobby Labonte had been battling hard for what they thought was second position, but turned out to be for all the marbles when the No. 24 ran dry. Mark Martin came out on top after the battle with Labonte, who could have won it all had the battle with Martin gone differently.
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1997: Bobby LabonteBobby Labonte spun out in the opening laps of the 1997 All-Star Race, but came back to lead 17 laps and nearly win the race. Labonte's car was no match for Jeff Gordon's now-infamous 'T-Rex' car.
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1996: Rusty WallaceThe 1996 All-Star Race featured Michael Waltrip's incredible Cinderella story driving for the Wood Brothers—transferring out of the Open race to win the main event. Rusty Wallace finished second in the No. 2 car in the race that brought Harry Gant out of retirement.
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1995: Sterling MarlinNobody could touch Jeff Gordon in the 1995 running of the All-Star Race—not even that year's Daytona 500 winner Sterling Marlin, who had a similar Daytona 500 win and All-Star P2 the season before.
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1994: Sterling MarlinGeoff Bodine claimed the 1994 All-Star Race after spinning early in the event. Marlin out-raced Ken Schrader but fell just a few car lengths short of Bodine at the end of the evening. Marlin's second-place finish wasn’t enough to get his name printed on the trophy.
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1993: Mark MartinMark Martin tried his hardest, but ultimately finished second to Dale Earnhardt in the 1993 All-Star Race. After being bested by The Intimidator in the closing laps, Martin said simply, 'He beat me. I don't have an excuse.'
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1992: Kyle PettyIn one of the most memorable All-Star Race events of all time, Kyle Petty moved Dale Earnhardt out of the way in the final corner, then battled hard with Davey Allison racing back to the line. Allison edged out Petty at the last moment, both cars making heavy contact along the way—resulting in Allison crashing hard into the wall and being taken to a local hospital. Neither Petty nor Allison celebrated that evening, though the fans enjoyed the dramatic finish of the race dubbed 'One Hot Night.'